“It is folly for him to rule over others who cannot govern himself.” – Publius Syrus
Are some of you shaking your heads in agreement with this quote? How many of you have had managers who have little self-awareness and prove it, over and over again, as they manage others? So much of success involves knowledge of people and how they interact. How can you gain this knowledge without knowing yourself – what motivates you, what disconnects you, what you need to collaborate effectively?
How well do you know yourself? How well do you understand what motivates and engages others with whom you work? Your effectiveness as a team member or manager starts with you!
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Do you ever find yourself at work saying, “Who cares?” It can be a defense mechanism when you are angry, upset, disappointed or fearful. Other times, it is a statement of truth – you are detached and do not care about a situation.
This is worth paying attention to. Detachment and apathy about your work are warning signals that it may be time for a change. Work is best when engaged in. How are you feeling presently about your work? Are you saying “ Who Cares?” or “I Care!”?
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Vacations and times spent away from work are always helpful to refresh your perspective on things. You don’t have to wait for them, however. There are other ways to change your perspective by getting away. Here are some of them:
• Spend a day out in the “field” (whatever that may be for your work) observing and interacting
• Solicit feedback and opinions from people around you, as well as from people you are not as closely involved with
• Find a completely new way to look at a situation and see if it fits
• Give some open contemplation time to difficult issues and see what your intuition tells you
• Physically get away from your normal work environment for short periods of time
Refreshing your perspective feeds clear thinking, creativity and momentum. Doing it often serves you.
As a teen, this was a phrase I used often thinking I was so nonchalant. Actually, today, it may have some relevance to your career and work life. All workplaces have expectations of the organization as a whole and of individual people within the organization. Some of these expectations relate to what you are supposed to be excited about – possibly a new mission, behaviors within the organization or your contribution to the organization.
Perhaps, in adult life, this is not a nonchalant question. What are you excited about in your work life? What do others expect you to be excited about? What are you not excited about that may be an indication that changes are needed?
Habits are habit-forming ☺. So much so, that after a while we are not conscious that we have them. There are both positive and negative habits. What are your habits – good and bad? Which are you ready to end and which can use some cultivating?
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Sometimes the amount of work you have to do starts getting to be over the top. There isn’t time and stress is building. As stress builds, you can lose perspective and focus while the work keeps on coming.
What can you do when work is overflowing and you don’t know how you can handle it all? Here are some ideas:
• Get yourself out of the way – step aside and look at the situation, rather than letting it control you
• Find some ways to lower your stress, right now
• Once your stress is lowered, realistically assess the situation – what is possible to get done and what is not?
• Take a break to regain focus and perspective
• And, the old standby ☺, remain fully in the present moment as you proceed.
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In tennis, there is a space on the court where you are not close enough to pick a ball off the net and not far enough back to reach a hard-hit ball. This space is called no man’s land.
You can find yourself in no man’s land in your work as well, when your next move is not clear to you or you are not in a place that allows you to move. When you are in no man’s land, the first step is to recognize that you are there. It is not a place for blame, giving up or staying still. It is a place for movement. Do what you have to to get yourself where you want to be.
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Dissonance: lack of agreement, consistency or harmony; conflict.
Experiencing any dissonance in your work lately (or forever)? Though work may not reach perfection, too much dissonance is unhealthy, unnecessary and inhibits your productivity. Best to minimize dissonance in your work and life.
Sometimes, you can become accustomed to dissonance or even encourage it, towards your own aims. Do so at your peril. To maximize your performance and work happy you need a work life that feeds you. Do an inventory of your work life (relationships and interactions, nature of your work, noise, expectations and time) and estimate the percentage of your time in which you experience dissonance. Is the percentage acceptable or unacceptable to you? If unacceptable, see what’s possible in terms of creating more harmony in your work experience.
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Is there anything relating to your career that you sometimes think about, but soon dismiss as “too far out there”? It is possible there’s something in it for you. Say there is a part of you that wants to take a big leap, however you are very good at convincing yourself why you can’t do it. In our dreams are clues to what can make us happy. You may be missing out.
If there is something that intrigues you, but you think is too far out there, start with small steps. Ask yourself what it is that draws you to the idea. Look at what part(s) of it may be attainable. Dismiss any negativity about it. You may find that what you thought was too far out there, is just right!
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What role does money play in your life and work? Some think that money makes the world go round. Others love it to death. Some think money is the root of all evil. People project so much onto money. What is it really but a means of exchange? Best that you put it in its rightful place.
One thing that is worth your focus is the nature of your relationship with money. Your relationship with money is often influenced by the events and experiences of your early life on through to the present day. What has formed your relationship with money in your life? What emotions do you feel when you think about money? Be aware of these things. Best to understand how money moves in your world and how you can use it to create the life and work you desire.
Speaking of money, there is a podcast, The Money Millhouse, by Ellie Kay and Bethany Bayless that I am a huge fan of. I joined Ellie and Bethany on April 23 for a fun interview on coaching and money. AND The Money Millhouse is offering a free download of my book, Power Stories to listeners!
Please check it all out on iTunes , Google Play , Stitcher or on The Money Millhouse website.
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